View Full Version : Say what? Congress doesn't respect our vets? pffftttt...

07-16-2010, 11:52 AM

Hill exempts self from veterans' law

Updated: 7/14/10 8:35 PM EDT

(This is just a snip, the article is pretty lengthy.)

A new report showing that Congress has largely exempted itself from a law that aids post-military employment for vets had lawmakers and veterans groups roiled Wednesday.

The report, by the Office of Compliance on the state of the congressional workplace, urges Congress to apply the Veterans Employment Opportunities Act to its own hiring habits. While the law provides veterans with prioritized opportunities to land government jobs, veterans who apply for jobs with the Architect of the Capitol, U.S. Capitol Police, the Congressional Budget Office and some support positions in the House and Senate do not receive this affirmative-action-type boost, potentially preventing veterans from getting jobs.

The report is already getting attention from Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), an Iraq and Afghanistan war veteran who served with the U.S. Marine Corps, who said he aims to push lawmakers to follow the law.

“It’s incredible that Congress — years after applying VEOA to government jobs — has yet to finalize the regulations for veterans’ employment in the legislative branch. Veterans are some of the most qualified individuals joining the work force today, possessing quality leadership, training and know-how,” Hunter told POLITICO in a statement. “We have made a commitment to these men and women, and it’s important that we follow through.”

Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), the ranking female member on the House Armed Services Committee, called the gap “unacceptable.”

“It’s unacceptable for Congress to exempt itself from VEOA requirements. I believe we have an obligation to honor the service and sacrifice of our veterans, including those who are looking for jobs in government. They have certainly earned the right to every possible advantage,” Sanchez said.

While Congress moved to apply VEOA to itself when the law passed in 1998, it required that extra steps be taken to tailor rules to the congressional workplace. But according to OOC’s report and aides familiar with the process, Congress has not voted to pass the regulations for years, potentially hindering some veterans from getting jobs in the legislative branch.

The law is designed to counteract economic loss that veterans can suffer after leaving jobs to serve in the military, but it does not guarantee a job.

“Congressional approval for these regulations is extremely important so that veterans benefit from the preference that Congress intended them to have,” said Tamara Chrisler, the executive director of OOC.

There are no statistics tracking the number of veteran applicants who are rejected from the legislative branch, but the biggest veterans’ group in the country is outraged that Congress has not followed its own law. The legislative branch is one of D.C.’s biggest employers, with nearly 30,000 workers, and is an attractive option for many veterans, who often gravitate toward government jobs after serving.

While the OOC has been meeting with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and submitted the new regulations for congressional approval more than two years ago, most members contacted by POLITICO, including veterans and key military committee members, were unaware of the parity gap, according to their aides. And that has veterans groups sounding the alarm.


Not surprising! Our politicians think they're above everything else, why shouldn't they have to give job preference to our veterans? Any more balls (or lack thereof) and they'll be lining up to publically spit on our fallen's graves. :bull: